Dyess Air Force Base is now home to the largest C-130J fleet in the world

ABILENE, Texas - Abilene community members made their way to the Civic Center Thursday in honor of the completion of the C-130J fleet at Dyess Air Force Base.

The "Super J Fleet Complete Gala" celebrated the arrival of the final C-130J Super Hercules at Dyess and also the four-star general, Paul Selva, who delivered the aircraft. The gala is being put on by the Military Affairs Committee of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce.

The wheels of the 28th C-130J Super Hercules touched down at Dyess Air Force Base Thursday afternoon. That means the 317th Airlift Group now has the largest C-130J aircraft fleet in the world. The planes replace the old C-130H model aircrafts.

Selva said the new model is "more efficient in terms of the use of manpower, smaller number of crewmembers, lower training burden, but still just as effective and in fact more effective in combat because of the automation that's been built into the aircraft."

Having the fleet will help out the U.S. military overseas.

"In just a couple of months they'll do the first J model deployment back into Afghanistan so the wing and the group have stayed mission ready the whole time. They're ready to go at supporting our soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines deployed forward and they will just make them that much more effective at it," said Selva. 

It will also mean a lot to the Abilene community.

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